‘Auto’creative folklore

He has devised a mobile public art installation which was seen on autorickshaws in Bengaluru
Although he hails from a small town in Tamil Nadu, being in Bengaluru for a few years now inspired him to communicate with the city and its people through his work. For Jeevan L Xavier (also called JLX) creative design for lifestyle products and textiles came easy, as he had worked with various business houses in Delhi and Bengaluru. He devised Along the Way, a mobile public art installation which was spotted on autorickshaws across the city and is now busy working on installations.
As an artist and a collector, Jeevan was inclined towards series and sequences, to surreptitiously surprise people by rendering the mundane with a playful twist. “It was important for me, that this work occupies the public space, both physical and imaginary, and not be situated in the white box of a gallery. I pushed it by extending it from the interiors of the auto-rickshaw to the outside of the vehicle. I was documenting vernacular artforms like painted sign boards, as they are slowly diminishing while on my ride from Yelahanka to Doddaballapur. I was touched by the naivety and rawness of the local artforms. No such designs on trucks etc are available on a public platform like the Internet. I call it urban folklore and this is what really reflects the sentiments of the masses.
I came into contact with autorickshaws as they were my mode of transport in the city and I started photographing them. As an art practice, an interactive artform is like a remedy.
Living in Bengaluru has been an enriching experience and I wanted to communicate my feelings through a visual medium. I decided to give the autos a decorative three-dimensional art form instead of yellow and black. I funded the project on my own,” he explains. And it was a challenging task, and JLX says, “With a full-time job, I get to spend only a few hours in the evenings and also on weekends. Sometimes I feel I should also have a life where I can just watch a movie with friends or hang out, but then I get this urge to create and I’m not able to let go of it. Once I do it, I feel light, satisfied and get a good night’s sleep.”
This designer with Himatsingka, a Bengaluru-based textile design and manufacturing firm, talks about his first tryst with art, “I was studying in seventh standard, when I would make innovative cards with all sorts of mediums. When Fashion TV came to India, I was impressed and took formal training from Tamil Nadu. My daily work involves designing for leading retail fashion accessories and home decor brands from across the globe, decoding trends and creating products. That’s why I wanted to do something of my own, that was different from my daily work and yet creative. Going forward, I want to create installations. I’m thinking of a large human size cage in a prominent public space to depict urban development. Besides my work, I like to collect scribble pads to question the expression of spontaneity. I also collect textiles and match boxes too and plan to create something from these soon.” Looks like he certainly is on a creative high!
( Source : dc )
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